Souskluitjies (South African cinnamon dumplings) - serves 6

These dumplings are a traditional favourite in South Africa and are smothered in a cinnamonny syrup after boiling.  Comfort food at its best.


250ml white flour
25ml baking powder
25g butter (softened)
3 eggs
125ml milk
salt to taste

1,25 litres of water (approx)
750ml sugar
1ml salt
25ml vinegar
25ml butter (melted)
25ml ground cinnamon
cloves (optional)
125ml sherry
custard powder


Sift the dry ingredients together.  Rub the butter into the dry ingredients using your fingers until the mixture had the consistency of breadcrumbs.  Beat the eggs thoroughly, add the milk and then beat the mixture again.  Add to the dry ingredients and mix well until a smooth batter is formed.

In a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, boil 1,25 litres of water (water must be at least 3cm deep) together with a pinch of salt.

Using a teaspoon dipped in boiling water, place spoonfuls of the batter carefully into the boiling water (as many as can comfortable fit in the saucepan you are using).

Cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and cook on medium heat for 8-10 minutes.  NB – resist the urge to peek at the dumplings during cooking as this causes them to implode like failed soufflé and become tough! 

Remove from heat and spoon into a serving bowl using a slotted spoon.  Keep warm.  Repeat the process if necessary until the batter is used up.  On top of each layer of dumplings, sprinkle some cinnamon sugar.

When the dumplings are all done, return the water to medium heat.  As some of it will have boiled away, you may need to add some to top it up to almost its original level. Add the rest of the sauce ingredients (add sherry last) except the custard powder and stir until all the sugar has melted.  Mix about 4 tablespoons of custard powder with cold water to make a smooth paste and add this slowly to the syrup to thicken it. Pour the syrup over the dumplings and serve.

Another great recipe from
© J Horak-Druiff 2010